Colourful catwalk shows return at hybrid London Fashion Week

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Colourful catwalk shows return at hybrid London Fashion Week


LONDON, Sept 17 (Reuters) – A hybrid London Fashion Week kicked off on Friday, with a mix of digital presentations and the event’s first in-person shows in a year.

International press and buyers were back watching the catwalk presentations, including displays from menswear designer and choreographer Saul Nash and Turkish-born Bora Aksu.

“It feels really great to be back,” Caroline Rush, chief executive officer of the British Fashion Council, told Reuters. “We’re excited to see those key media and retailers that help drive British business.”

The line-up includes 79 events (including shows, appointments, presentations) and 82 digital productions. Only a few designers hosted catwalk shows in person last September.

At in-person events “we will be asking for proof of vaccination, we will be encouraging everybody to test every morning,” Rush said.

“And if people haven’t been vaccinated, then testing every morning will be absolutely mandatory as well. Backstage is much stricter … and we will be encouraging people to wear masks.”

The BFC has teamed with TikTok, a short-video platform, to host its NEWGEN programme for up-and-coming designers.

Saul Nash dressed models wearing relaxed loungewear, including matching polo tops and shorts and shiny or printed tracksuits.

Models present creations during the Bora Aksu Spring/Summer 2022 catwalk show at London Fashion Week in London, Britain, September 17, 2021. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

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Known for her feminine designs, Alice Temperley took inspiration from Agatha Christie mystery “Death on the Nile” for her spring/summer 2022 collection.

In a prerecorded clip, models wore floral and leaf-print dresses, checked trouser suit and safari-inspired denim jumpsuits. Evening wear was available in green and black silky gowns.

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Bora Aksu turned for Mathilde Willink (an Amsterdam socialite known for her bold style) for his spring line. He made colourful, ruffled dresses as well as flared trousers and knit ensembles.

In an outdoor garden show, models wore silk tulle and taffeta dresses in hot pink, green, yellow, red and coral – some adorned in floral embellishments. You could also find cropped jackets, tweed jackets, and trench coats with a pussy bow collar.

“As we’re stepping into this new world after a lockdown … I tried to inject this kind of humour and encouragement, and just saying that we don’t actually need to limit ourselves with fitting in a box, we can be free,” Aksu told Reuters.

The pandemic has had a severe impact on the luxury goods industry, with travel restrictions and store closures causing a decrease in demand.

The UK womenswear market was worth 26.5 billion pounds ($36.49 billion) in 2020, down from 30.6 billion pounds the previous year, according to market research firm Mintel.

London Fashion Week is open until Tuesday.

($1 = 0.7262 pound)

Reporting by Marie-Louise Gumuchian; additional reporting by Mindy Burrows and Ben Makori; Editing by Andrew Heavens

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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